Taking the House by Storm

The trials and tribulations of the average gal trying to navigate through life, love and the pursuit of domestic bliss.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Watch Out for Deadly Comet

If you haven't already heard of EWG.org, it's a website sponsored by the Environmental Working Group. They do studies and perform tests on a myriad of consumable products in order to gauge those products' toxicity. While I'm not religious about utilizing the site, I have checked out children's sunscreen and various cosmetics. I think you'd be surprised to see how many of the products you use are chockful of harmful chemicals. I know I was a little shocked at the levels in my Origins products considering that particular line is supposedly natural. But that's a topic for another day.

Since I'm on EWG's email list, I get periodic notices alerting me to the dangers of some product or another. Today's email's subject was regarding cleaning supplies that may be used at home or in schools. EWG tested some popular and some green cleaning supplies for safety and Comet, which is at this very moment sitting under my kitchen sink, was the worst of the worst.

Which is saying something since, according to EWG, "nearly any chemical can legally be used in cleaners, and ingredient lists are not required on labels."

Comet was found to release 143 air contaminants into the air and contain 7 chemicals that may cause cancer. And I thought it was just good for scrubbing my kitchen sink. Which goes to prove that while ignorance is bliss, it could also potentially kill you.

Suffice it to say, I immediately became interested in some more green ways to clean my sink and found a lot of great resources thanks to Mom Go Green. According to a commenter on the site, you can simply use baking soda and water. Another person provided this link to a printable fold-out card full of green cleaning ideas (you have to scroll down a bit to the Household Cleaners section). EarthEasy has a lot of great ideas for making your own cleaning products for less while EWG offers some practical tips for cleaning more safely in your home.

One of my favorite cleaning gurus, Linda Cobb, the Queen of Clean, has always promoted the use of such simple, safe household products like baking soda and vinegar to clean. And my friend, Christine, uses vinegar to clean everything, including dusting the furniture. It smells like eggs at first, but it does fade. In addition to being safer, these things are a lot cheaper than the more dangeous options out there. So it's better for you all around.


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